"The Biden administration on Friday offered its first loan commitment for a lithium processing plant, backing a facility in southwest Nevada that would provide the highly sought mineral needed for EV batteries but that some environmentalists contend will further threaten an endangered flower.
The Department of Energy revealed in a release that the agency’s Loan Programs Office has offered a conditional commitment of up to $700 million for a proposed lithium carbonate processing plant that has just started undergoing a federal environmental review. If built, the proposed plant and associated mine at the site would provide enough lithium for almost 400,000 electric vehicles each year.
The administration’s financial backing of the project is part of its larger push to boost domestic supply chains for battery minerals and electric vehicles, with federal agencies looking at the steps needed to ramp up electrification and slash emissions from the nation’s transportation sector. According to DOE, lithium demand is expected to surpass global production by 2023."